Community-driven Development for 15 Villages in Burundi
Impact Projects

Community-driven Development for 15 Villages in Burundi

World Centric + Spark Microgrants

$139,755 from profits from fiscal year 2021

This project supports these U.N. Sustainable Development goals

Burundi is ranked one of the poorest countries in the world with a population of 10.8 million and a 74.7% poverty rate. Burundi has suffered through recurrent social unrest, political crises, and civil war since the 1990s, and is home to thousands of repatriated families and internally displaced persons.

Since 2017, Spark has built the civic and economic power of rural communities facing poverty in Burundi. Spark's Facilitated Collective Action Process (FCAP) strengthens citizen engagement and improves rural livelihoods to drive sustainable development. The number of meals eaten per day by families doubles and households see $100+ increase in assets in year one. Through the FCAP, facilitated village "town-hall style" weekly meetings are combined with a seed grant that enables citizens to launch a development project, practice self-organizing and empower them to make decisions about how to use resources for community benefit. Spark flips development aid from prescriptive to locally owned, so that every village can define their own future.

In Burundi, Spark Microgrants works in partnership with FVS-Amie des enfants, a local civil society organization. 18 communities have partnered with Spark to drive their own development. World Centric is funding an additional 15 communities.

There are six key phases in the Spark approach where community members envision their future together, plan towards that future and develop tangible goals to achieve their vision. They are provided with a grant to make their vision a reality.

Spark's approach begins with the recruitment of a local university graduate who is enrolled in a facilitator fellowship program. Over the course of two years, facilitators take communities through the Spark approach:

  1. Community Building
  2. Goal Setting
  3. Proposal Development
  4. Technical Advisor Review
  5. Implementation
  6. Future Envisioning

Learn more about their unique approach.

Since 2016, World Centric has funded 63 communities to participate in the Spark process in Rwanda and Burundi.

With our grant of $139,755 to Spark Microgrants 15 villages will receive $8,000 seed grants and 9,750 individuals will benefit from a community-driven project.

About Spark Microgrants

A World Centric partner since 2016.

Spark Microgrants was founded in 2010 to prove community-driven development can be done at scale. Spark has designed a novel approach for launching communities facing poverty into action and has partnered with over 220 villages across Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Ghana. Of the village projects backed by Spark, 94 percent are sustaining, 77 percent have launched secondary projects independently of Spark and 90 percent have continued to host regular community meetings where they discuss important topics, such as land disputes and new initiatives. These metrics indicate Spark partner communities graduate from the process with a commitment to continued local change.


Written by

World Centric


Read time

3 minutes


Published on

May 29, 2021


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